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Pen Verses Crate for New Puppy?

Got a new, young, furry love in your life? This is the place for you to ask all of your questions-big or small! Just remember that you are receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a vet or behaviorist! Most important is to remember to have fun with your new fur baby.

  
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Member Since
08/29/2013
 
 
Barked: Thu Aug 29, '13 2:19pm PST 
wave

My fiance and I have a 4 year old dog and have been talking for a few years now about adopting a 2nd. Although we know the benefits of adopting an older dog, we have our hearts set on a puppy.

I actually work from a home office, so the new addition won't be left home alone. However, I do work full time, 8+ hours a day, and need to keep my office area quiet while I'm working.

I'm planning on setting up a puppy area in our kitchen. I do get regular breaks, plus 45 minutes off for lunch. During my breaks and lunch time I can take the puppy out to use the bathroom and play with him a bit. Plus we do have our older dog to keep him company as well.

But I'm trying to decide if I want to crate train, or if, instead of a crate, I should get a larger pen or section off a section of the kitchen.

We crate trained our older dog and it worked out well, but I only worked part time then so the older dog didn't have to stay in his crate for more than maybe 4 hours a day, if that. The new puppy will need to be contained for an average of 8 hours a day, minus the time I spend with him on my breaks, plus at night.

I was thinking that a larger pen would give him more space to move around and play. I do realize that it might make potty training harder. I don't mind that so much, I'm more trying to figure out the best way to contain him while I get my work done.

Basically I guess I need to contain him for his own safety - because I won't be able to keep a close eye on him while I'm working and I don't want him getting into anything when I'm not there to supervise. His safety and happiness is my main concern, getting him potty trained is really secondary to me.

I just feel kind of bad putting a young puppy in a crate for such a large chunk of the day. Even with breaks, it seems like a long time to leave him cooped up. Plus I'll need to crate him again at night while I'm sleeping, at least until he's a bit older and better trained.

Advice? Which would be better for my situation?

What about using a combination of a crate and a pen? Maybe I could crate him at night and during the day when he's napping, but stick him in the pen for awhile when he seems to have more energy?

One more thing, sorry this is so long - Can anyone actually recommend a good, sturdy pen? I bought one before to try with my older dog when he was younger and he learned that if he pushed against the side of the pen, he could slowly move it across the floor
laugh out loud If I do opt for a pen, I want something that is very sturdy, even if the dogs push against the sides.
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Sandy

tiny...but fast!
 
 
Barked: Thu Aug 29, '13 7:39pm PST 
If u are going to get an exercise pen get one with a top because your dog could hurt himself trying to get out. Rover is the best but Midwest makes a good one too just make sure u get a top!!! The plus side to an exercise pen is that u can put a pee pad, a water dish, a dog bed and toys inside because its bigger.
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Arya

Serious Face
 
 
Barked: Thu Aug 29, '13 9:40pm PST 
I like the exercise pen for during the day, and I also put Arya's crate inside the pen so that she has a comforting spot to lay down in. You'll just have to make sure you don't leave anything in the crate/pen that your pup can destroy and potentially choke on. It varies from puppy to puppy what's safe and what isn't and at what age the stop tearing things up.
Like... I can leave a blanket in Arya's crate and she won't rip it up, but she'll rip the fluff off any tennis balls and swallow it so I can't leave anything with that material in. Some puppies love to cuddle stuffed animals, and some destroy them and eat the stuffing. Just keep an eye on your pup's play style and you'll know what's safe and what isn't. smile
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Flicka ~ CGC

NO-ONE is going- to sneak up on- my Mummy
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 1, '13 9:23pm PST 
Bumping to drown the spambot
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Member Since
08/29/2013
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 8, '13 8:48am PST 
Thanks for the replies.

Do you think something like this would work?
http://www.amazon.com/Best-Pet-Folding-Play-Pen/dp/B002ABO2HE /ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_S_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=1YO4MPI9XBVNU&coliid=I38WMTPS0 6055Q

I like that is has the waterproof bottom, plus a top. But I'm wondering if the fabric/mesh would hold up to a puppy. We're looking to get a small/toy breed dog, but I know even the little guys can be very destructive when they want to be.
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Arya

Serious Face
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 8, '13 9:23am PST 
What breed of toy dog?

I think that would be fine, provided you keep your pup's nails trimmed depending on the dog. But if the breed you picked is a tougher, more destructive breed I'd go for the sturdier metal ex-pen (it's not very pretty to look at, but it's very effective).
So like... I might put a chihuahua or Italian greyhound pup in the mesh one, because they're so dainty. But I would get a metal pen for a Terrier, as I think they would inevitably figure out the mesh is not as strong as they are.
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Benny

Where did I bury- that bone- again...
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 8, '13 5:43pm PST 
I think a mixture of both would be good, pen during the day and crate at night. Having the crate in the pen during the day is also a good tip.

What about having a fenced run in your yard? Then the two dogs could hang out provided the older one isnt too high energy and hard on the pup.

It is a long chunk of the day to be in a pen. Its not the ideal set up but its not bad either. Just be aware that he may be disruptive to you even in a pen. I always find even when my dog is occupied I worry about what he is doing..thinking
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Member Since
08/29/2013
 
 
Barked: Tue Sep 10, '13 11:03am PST 
Arya - Strangely enough, we are actually on a waiting list for a Klee Kai puppy! We're hoping for a toy or miniature, but are open to taking a standard too.

Thanks for your reply, Benny. I am leaning towards getting both a pen and a crate, at least that way I would have the option of using either.

We have a fenced in yard but it's small. I'm not sure a run would work out, just because it would take up a large portion of the yard and I wouldn't be able to see/hear the dogs outside while I'm in my home office. I'm not comfortable with leaving the dogs outside without supervision.

Ultimately the pen/crate would just be until the puppy is a bit older and trained more. I do feel bad about leaving him in a crate/pen, but I keep thinking that other people make it work somehow. I mean, other people work full time and still manage to raise puppies. I have the added benefit of working from home, so I can take the dogs out and play with them during all my breaks. Plus I would be able to check up on them throughout the day, and worst case if the new addition needed some extra attention I could take a few extra unpaid breaks.

I'm also thinking that maybe I could managed to take a week or two off after we get the puppy, that way he could have my undivided attention for a week or so before having to get used to my work schedule.

Another convenient thing is that I work weekends and have Thursdays and Fridays off, but my fiance has regular weekends off. So really the only days we're both working, when the puppy would have to spend much more of his time being confined, are Monday - Wednesday. The rest of the week either myself, or my fiance would be around to watch the puppy much more.

Edited by author Tue Sep 10, '13 11:03am PST

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Arya

Serious Face
 
 
Barked: Tue Sep 10, '13 7:19pm PST 
AHHHHH!!! Very excited for you!! Klee Kai pups are such dolls.
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Member Since
08/29/2013
 
 
Barked: Thu Sep 12, '13 10:49am PST 
We're really excited too! I've actually wanted one for years now, but wanted to wait a bit until our first dog got a bit older before getting a 2nd.

How were your Klee Kai's as puppies? My current dog is (we think) a jack russell chihuahua mix. He was an absolute terror when he was a puppy laugh out loud He's a good boy now though.
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